Brazil Sao Paulo East Mission

Brazil Sao Paulo East Mission

Monday, January 26, 2015

A missionary's shoes are hole-y

Mom and family

So transfers!...I'm staying here in Penha, which was almost a given, and the other 3 elders are leaving! We still don't know they're going yet, we'll only know tomorrow. So I'll have to me virar (do it on myself) to get to all the lunches and help the new companionship to get to know their area and what not. It'll be a challenge but it'd doable. Elder Y. Gomes thought he was gonna "die" or finish up his mission here so he was surprised to find out he's being transferred.

I'm happy that you liked the note from Ana Paula, they really are a special family.

Guess what! We went to this place that sells ties that are SUPER awesome and pretty and where they'd normally be like 30 reais, they were only like 5!! :) I bought 21 ties for 120 reais! Thanks for the Christmas present! It rocks! Later I'll take pictures to show you guys, man these ties are awesome.

So glad that Carolos was baptized last week!  I know that is a good feeling!  You do so much good each day that doesn’t turn into a baptism, but it’s nice when all that works brings that particular fruit!  Are the other family members starting to be interested in the gospel?
Yeah they are! His cousin is being a bit annoying but his sister and other family members are super interested and humble enough to accept the change whereas his cousin is too proud to accept the change. Like it says in Moroni 7 I think, No one is accepted in the kingdom of god unless their humble. In the next weeks, I believe we'll be able to baptize some more from his family. 

How is E Gomes’ back doing? 
He's 100 percent now

How was your week?
My week was good, I finished Jesus, the Christ this week! Man that's a really good book, I would encourage everyone to read it when they have the chance. Just a couple pages a day, it's so awesome. One of my favorite parts was the part about the apostasy in the 3rd to last chapter.

What is your weather like now?  You’re probably at your hottest?
Thankfully, it's been raining a good amount lately and so the weather's been a bit cooler, more tolerable. I hope it continues but I know it want. Did I tell you guys that there's a lack of water here? Because of the lack of rain, the water deposits are down to like 20 percent or something like that, it's not a huge worry for now but we try to save water.

How is this ward/branch different from your last one?
It's more friendly, bigger....more willing, more excited, dedicated. 2 people have already asked me directly "Elder, what can I do to help you and your investigators?" And at first I just smile and am speechless, than I thank the person, and then mark a date to work with that person.

Are there many returned missionaries in the wards there? Not young ones necessarily, but older members who served a mission and give strength to their ward/branch.
Yeah there are many, I'd say more than half the men in the word served missions.

Have you eaten anything yummy lately?
Pumpkin sweet, it reminded me a lot of your pumpkin pie!
estroganofe with meet. Man it was like my 2 favorite things put together, brasilean churrasco/BBQ and estroganofe. It was perfect haha
Homemade pizza

How are your shoes holding up?
They're better now, I got them patched up so now they're not holy :)

So yeah, that's about it.
Oh and I made a pocket for my planner that I'll take a picture of and show you later too. It's cool because it's also a good place to hide money!

I love you all!

Elder Horton

Monday, January 19, 2015

Links I Like


Hey Family

I found an awesome link! Look into it! Read it! Share it! (Facebook)

I don't have time to watch these videos but it seems like they'd be interesting, I was reading a book about Member Missionary Work and it cited this movie

Another cool story :)

Mom I think you just made a record. I think this is your first letter in more than a year that I'm on my mission that you didn't ask a single that's weird haha but I'm already used to your questions. "How was your week" and what not

This week was awesome! We baptized!!! Carlos! My first baptism here in Penha. We found him a 3 weeks ago when we were going to call some of his family members to go to church, we hadn't seen him yet because he hadn't been living there long, his family was sleeping (slackers) but he was up and awake and we were like "hey, wanna go to church?!" "sure" and he had a really good experience and was and is really excited which made the others excited as well :) We're hoping to baptize his sister and other family members in the coming weeks, we'll see. It's also the first time that I got in the water since Bras Cubas with my son, Elder Mikulecky when we baptized Jose Carlos. It's been a while.

The week was a bit difficult because my companion, Elder Gomes, is having some back problems so that's made it a bit harder but the good news is that he's getting better.

The zone has 8 people marked to be baptized! I hope that the missionaries follow through because if they do their job well, we'll reach our goal for the month of january! which would make me a happy zone leader :)

Every day is another opportunity to learn.

I learned or reinforced something this week. The best missionary is the missionary that really tries to become like Jesus Christ and take upon him His atributes of patience, love, dilignece, obedience, and the others. We had an experience this week with a family. We were teaching the father of the family who was interested in our message and the family didn't really want to hear a lot of what we had to say the times that we'd passed by there, we always offered but they never really wanted to listen. Well this saturday, we went there again and they started off telling us how angry they were with us and criticizing the church and things we'd been teaching and what not and man if we hadn't had patience, humility, love, knowledge and diligence, man we would've just burned them then and there and left them even more angry than when we got there. And at times, I really did just wanna burn them (does that make sense in english??) but we had patience and humility and when we lift, they were smiling and friendly with us and we were able to mark another visit to come back and explain more.

I got to see a young woman open up her mission calling this week :) It was cool to see her excitement and feel the spirit of that again.

Well I think that's about it...yep......I can't think of anything else. If I do, I'll write it later

Love you all!

Elder Horton

Monday, January 12, 2015




How did your Zone meeting go on Wednesday?
It went well, it was kinda funny, we told the sisters that were going to give a training as well that each one only had 10 minutes. One started talking and what not. 10 minutes passed, 20 passed "oh, they probably decided to put their time together and just let her talk" 30, I think like 35 or 40 minutes passed with just one talking. But it was well said, and the good news is that I was going to talk about a lot of the same things. Then the second sister got up, newer in the mission, 5 minutes, 10, 15, her companion (looking to me) "How much time left?" (And me, thinking, negative 30 minutes) "About 5 minutes" haha thus is life sometimes. But they were good things that were said. My companion was going to talk as well but he didn't because of the time, I got up for about 15 or 20 minutes and talked, reiterating important points that the sister had mentioned, talking about important things, techniques, what was needed and what not. One thing I did that I liked, I told them that every time that I did thumbs up that they were supposed to yell BAPTISM!!! So that's what they did! They were a bit dead at first but they got more awake every time. Some missionaries got really into it. I focused a bit on baptism and testified that every missionary has the potential to baptize thousands of people. It was good, necessary, they were losing their focus on baptism and their excitement to baptize. A year ago, I would've never given this training but a lot of things have changed in a year. A year ago, we had that whole GH problem, today, that's more of a myth and so basically any baptism is a good baptism. I like baptism :) Speaking of baptism! This Sunday we're gonna baptize 2 men and maybe some other people! I'm excited :)

What did you share from your mission leadership counsel?
I talked about the power of the Book of Mormon, BAPTISM!!, the testimonies of the missionaries and the personal conversion of each missionary and the power that they have when they're personally converted like Alma and Amon and Nephi.

How did your 10 nonmembers respond to your teaching?  Was it more difficult to teach a larger group?
It was more difficult, each one had their own questions and doubts and I wanted to respond All of them!! Buttt...we just responded a few and left them wanting answers which is actually a good thing because it'll make them want to visit with us again. Something funny I'll tell you guys. One of them said that they wanted to understand more about the book of Micah in the Bible and that had asked their pastors and what not and that they didn't know and was asking us right? I told her "I know with a certainty one thing...That I know nothing about the book of Micah, but I know that I can study it later and get back to you on that" They all laughed. I like making people laugh. I worry sometimes that my being a jokester sometimes scares the spirit away, I don't know. I'm trying to be aware of this.
But yeah it was good, we're following up with them and passing them on to other missionaries (because they don't live in our ward)

I learned something about faith recently. So generally, for us to have faith to do something, we have to see it be done first right? Like when Jesus was walking on the water and Peter was like "hey, tell me to come to you" And then he walked on water. They would've never thought "Hey let's try walking on water!" Other examples could be the cures of Jesus Christ and expulsing demons. Christ gave the example. This is something that I've learned recently, that's why we have the scriptures, to give us the example, show us what is possible through prayer, faith, obedience to commandments, church attendance, listening to the prophet and what not. But something else that I noticed even more recently that I learned that I think is cool is the following: When someone never saw something be done before but has enough faith to believe and ask the Lord for it to be done. Like the brother of Jared and the stones. He had never seen that done before. The Lord could've just given him some answer or light source but He asked what he wanted Him to do, wanting to see his faith. And then when he showed his faith, the Lord said something like "Your faith is so great, that the veil cannot hide myself, or doesn't have effect" or something like that. Cool huh? Applying it in our day-to-day. A theory/opinion of mine. We should look for new ways to show our faith in the Lord to fulfill His purposes (magnifying our callings, helping others, teaching the gospel and what not) and if we have enough Faith and really believe and if it's for the benefit of His children, then it will be done and our faith will be great like the brother of Jared.

I was talking with one of the assistants to the president, he was giving me some advice, some words of counsel. One of the things he said to me that I liked that I wanted to share with you guys. He told me "Just be you" He said something like "You were called by the Lord to serve as Zone Leader in this zone, in this moment in this mission. I don't know why, I don't know if the president knows why, maybe you don't even know why, but the Lord knows why and there's a reason for you to be Zone Leader here, now. Just be you" I really liked that comment and it helped me because I was really worried about the zone meeting the next day and it helped me to be more calm and to just relax a bit and be myself. And the meeting went well, the sister, that in the beginning really didn't like me, complemented me at the end saying that it was really well done.

There's an elder that I'm living with that I'd known him before in the mission. He has a tendency to get irritated really fast with the smallest things and it's hard for him to forgive. I'd done something that he didn't like in Guará and after like 2 weeks of him being "bitten" with me (as we would say in Portuguese) I asked forgiveness for what I had done and he was better. Well I continue being imperfect, so here, I've done some things as well that he didn't like very much without wanting to of course, and he got "bitten" or annoyed with me again and I'm just like "What did I do?!" haha well after a couple days of this, I tried talking with him and like I said, it's hard for him to forgive and he didn't even talk with me when I tried to apologize and invite him to talk about what was wrong. Well thanks to my companion he ended up talking with me right and it was a good talk, he said some things that I need to do better, I said some things that he needs to do better and then we were fine. Then I did something else that he didn't like, the same thing. He was reluctant to talk with me, but ended up talking and we were fine afterwards. It's funny too, after that talk session, I was telling him that maybe he needed to change and get better in some things too and he said "If you talk about humbleness, I'm gonna hit you with this guitar" And I said "Well at least you already know, I don't need to say it" Haha I thought that was funny, that he was showing the greatest form of pride and need of humility just with that phrase. 

And yesterday, I did yet another thing that he didn't like and he got bitten with me again and I perceived and he told me what I did minutes before that he didn't like (which was really important, because before, he didn't tell me what I had done wrong, he just got angry with me and then when I asked what I did, he couldn't remember the exact case, what had really happened) I apologized and told him I'd do better and after like 1 or 2 hours, he was normal again! It's progress! Something interesting. In this whole process, I've prayed a lot so that the Lord would soften his heart, and mine, so that he would forgive me and talk with me and get better and so that we could really be friends and bit by bit the Lord is answering my prayers. Progress!

Well I've already written a lot. I'm happy as a missionary. Happiness comes from the Holy Ghost, that still small voice, and the certainty that we're on a path that will lead us to Eternal life in God's Kingdom. "I have about a year on the mission" is my response to how much time I have. The gospel really is perfect. God is merciful. The Book of Mormon is the word of God.

Elder Horton

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

My second new year (and last :/) on the mission in Brasil


Hey family!

Mom, I believe you've always been this spiritually inclined, I believe that I’m just perceiving it more now. I remember when I told you I wanted to go to Mars in 2024 that you told me that I'd lose temple blessings so I'm pretty sure you've always been like this :)

Thank you guys again for your good examples, you guys are awesome.

My week was a good one! My second new year (and last :/ ) on the mission in Brasil. I really like the new year here it's really awesome. In the US there's one place that shoots off a bunch of fireworks. Here EVERYONE shoots off fireworks EVERYWHERE. And the cool think about this year was that we're living in an apartment building and I was able to go up on top on like the 10th floor so I saw a whole bunch of São Paulo, like a half of the whole city. It was awesome, just continuous fireworks going off everywhere. There were even some fireworks that some neighbors shot off that exploded about on our level which was kind of scary the first time haha.

I got some more Christmas letters from the following families that I’d like you to thank for me:
Ezra Hernandez
Peter Fortuna (I think I spelled that right....I can't read my writing)
Mark Burkinshaw
Fareed Betros
Tucker Family
Carver Family
And the Horton family :) haha Uncle Tom an Aunt Deena that sent me a guitar pick maker and some sweets :)

My week was good, we continue to do a lot of divisions or splits so it's rare that I’m actually working with my companion which is weird but it's good for us to all to learn.

We did a division with one of the Assistants to the president which was cool, I learned a couple of things.

We had a cool lesson with like 10 nonmembers and 4 members. It's not very often that a missionary has an opportunity to teach a group larger than like 5 or 6 people

The members of the ward are awesome :) they’re super friendly and they help one another and they help us too. The thing I've noticed about members is that they're willing to help, they just don't know how to help a lot of times or are afraid.

We had a mission leadership counsel as well with all the Zone leaders and assistants and the president and that was good as well, I took down a lot of notes to pass on to the zone this Wednesday at the meeting.

Oh and this past week I pulled an all nighter in the hospital with another companionship that was sick. I got home and went to sleep at 6:15 and woke up at 9:30 and continued with the day. It was tiring but it was good that we were able to be there to help the missionaries, they're getting better now.

How many Elders and Sisters are in your Zone?  
There are 14 elders and 10 sisters

How has your life changed since becoming a Zone Leader?  
I've become responsible for more missionaries, I do more divisions, the way I follow up with the missionaries has changed and the way that I'm followed up with by the assistants changed. I have to plan more things as a zone leader, it's a greater responsibility but I like it.

How has your missionary work changed? 
I've had to work even smarter because there are more meetings and divisions and baptismal interviews so there's no time to waste. The good news is that we have some highly probably baptisms in the coming weeks so we'll see what happens with that. It's kind of funny, we do so many divisions and it's almost always me who stays in our area that Elder Gomez doesn't know like half of our investigators.

Elder Horton

12-30-14 On the way to being like Christ, I want to be like Elder Campbell


Hey family

Sorry I didn't write yesterday, all the lan houses were closed or filled because of the holidays. I don't have a lot of time today either.

Tell me about ….. your Christmas Day … your week … your companion … other Elders you work with … thoughts you’ve had recently that are meaningful … any New Year’s resolutions? … anything else that’s on your mind…
Christmas week was cool. I loved talking with you guys, that's always fun. The work itself was a bit hard because people were running to make last minute buys or traveling and what not but when we were able to visit someone, it was nice. My companion is awesome, I'm able to learn a lot from him though it seems we're never together, the last week, we did divisions or splits Every Day haha I wrote his name in my planner as being my companion but I'm really thinking about erasing it and putting the name of All the elders that I do divisions with haha. But it's a part of being Zone leader as well, the need to de more divisions.

Lately I've really been learning a lot spiritually and, I believe, becoming better spiritually. In my journal, I always write about spiritual things that I've learned and for a couple of days and weeks before, I wasn't writing that much but in the past week or two I've written a good amount of stuff. The Lord is trying to help me to learn, because I asked him too.

I was talking with a recently returned missionary today. He showed me his room. Man what a perfect room. He had various pictures of Christ and gospel related themes. He had like 20 books written be leaders of the church, and 4 that he specifically showed me that he bought recently that have to do with the atonement of Christ and one other important subject that I remember. He's just now reading “Jesus, The Christ,” like me, and I made the comment on all of that, based on what I have Really Learned in the past 2 weeks. The comment I made was something like this "It's interesting, it seems like the more we understand, comprehend or know with respect to Jesus Christ and His atonement and his Gospel, the more power and authority we have as we speak and the more the holy ghost will bear testimony of our words and the more we become personally converted." I don't remember very well now but when I got done he said something like "Elder, that's really the underlying principle or doctrine behind everything that the church teaches." or something like that. I find it amazing that he understands the same thing that I understand and that we have the same thought. It confirms my thoughts and strengthens my testimony. He told me after, "You're an example to me Elder." And I told him that HE was an example to ME! I wanna be a returned missionary like him. He also said that life is like when you're juggling that whole bunch of plates on sticks like they do in the circus, you get one going and then the other and then the other and then the other and then the other and then return to the first one to keep it from falling and he related this to life saying every plate was like the church, family, kids, educatino, and other important things. I asked him if he managed to do it all, like to keep all the plates going and he responded quickly and with a smile on his face "no" haha and I was like "nooooooo, don't tell me that!" like as if he was killing my hope right (but joking) He said he's even thought about giving up before. Not from the church but just from trying so hard but he said that every time he thinks like that he remembers his Savior and that helps him. He said the Savior's life and His atonement helps him to cope with everything and manage to do everything he needs. HE ASKED US "Elders, what can the Elders Quorum do to help you in your missionary work?" DOES IT GET ANY BETTER THAN THAT??? I told him I wanted 15 men like him in every ward haha. I wanna be like him one day.

Speaking of being like people. I want to be like Christ right? So on the way to being like Christ, I want to be like Elder Campbell first! Man that man is awesome! The bishop here described Elder Campbell the following way: "When you look in his eyes, you see something different, a glow. And the way he talks about the can really tell that he really loves the gospel. He was only here 1 transfer (6 weeks) but in that 1 transfer, he started a new page in this ward, gained the love of every member, and really made a difference." MAN THAT GUY IS AWSOME!!!! I don't have a lot of time to learn to do that so I’m trying my hardest to be able to do that by the end of the mission.

The church is perfect, the gospel is perfect, Jesus Christ is perfect, God's plan is perfect. Everything's perfect! We just have to follow Christ and do the things we know we ought to :)
Study Jesus the Christ!!!!

I love you all!
Have a great week!

Elder Horton

12-25-14 CHRISTMAS IS HERE!!!!!!



Hey I'm in the house of the family that I'll use skype but it'll be around 3:30 or 4 here okay? I'm not sure what time that will be there. Cool beans?

Elder Horton

I believe it's 4 hours different so it'll be like 11:30 or 12:00 there. I believe. I'm sending this message and it's 1:27 here

12-23-14 Merry Christmas and Zone Leader


We didn't hear from you today so that must mean we'll hear from you tomorrow!   I hope all is well!  Maybe you had a mission Christmas meeting or something going on like that!  Love you!  Mom
Yep, you guessed right mom! Sorry I didn't have the chance to get on yesterday but today I'm on.


I laughed a lot that Rie used 12 sticks of butter. I feel like that's bigger than the pan she used

Mom I was curious about something recently. How was it for you to raise me? What was your greatest difficulty or challenge? What was your greatest joy or triumph?

So tell me all about transfers!!!  Where are you?
My new house  I'm in Penha which is a part of São Paulo, the actual City São Paulo and not the state of São Paulo.

For you to have an idea of where I've been and where I am now.  My Past Areas  Cool huh?

Who is your new companion?   
Elder Y. Gomez that was actually my zone leader back in Guará, in Pinda, for 1 transfer
He and I are zone leaders together of the zone of Penha. I saw Elder Campbell before the transfers meeting and I tried to get some information from him about my future companion or area and he told me that I would receive an awesome companion and I was going to an awesome area. I asked if he like did that for me as like a favor or something and he said no, that it was the Lord. He said that they were talking about my name as Zone Leader in this area and that they felt really good about that decision. Goes to show me how much trust the Lord and the president have in me or are putting in me. I hope I can live up to their expectations. I've liked being zone leader up to know, it's been cool and a good opportunity for me to grow as well.

Where is he from?  
He's from Belém do Pará

What was your week like?  
My week was good, the area has a lot of hills but we take a lot of buses so at least we don't walk everywhere. The people here are different than the people I've already met. Either, they're super friendly and open and willing to change or they're already determined and they don't want anything. Then of course there are always some lazy ones but I feel like there are a lot less lazy ones in this area. Our teaching group is a bit small for now because before I got here, they had to basically close the area to help some other areas in the zone so we're working to get some good investigators this week.

What is your new ward/branch like?
It's like This.  I've gotten to know and memorize the name of about half the ward already and they're all a fun bunch of people, I'm excited to be able to work with them :) There are some that have already accepted me as family because I remind them of an elder that was really special and friendly and the ward that passed here about 4 years ago and they say I remind them of him. That's a good thing right? The funny thing is that coincidentally, I met him this last Sunday! He was at a devotional which I'll talk more about later.

Did you say sufficient good-byes in your old area to feel closure?
I feel like I did yeah. I would've liked to have said goodbye to everyone but that's not possible. It's kinda funny, I was looking at pictures on my phone and I got more trunky looking at pictures of the members in Pinda than at pictures of my family. Not that I love them more or anything but it's interesting. I think it's because I Just left them and I'm used to being away from you guys.

Christmas is on Thursday – did you buy something for yourself yet?  Or do you have something in mind to get before your mission is finished?  
No I haven't bought anything yet, I have some things in mind though, we're gonna go to 25 de março which is like a super cheap shopping place and I'm gonna buy a bunch of awesome ties and who knows what else I can find there. I think I'll buy some more scripture cases too.

Do you have a dinner appointment for that day?
Dinner? No, Lunch? Yes. We'll be eating lunch with the family that will help us do Skype

What will be the timing for SKYPING with you?
I believe it will be after lunch so like 2 or so. I don't know what time that is there...And it's really easy to do a 3 or 4 or even 5 way skype with video and sound and everything normal, you just gotta do the conference thingie.

One of the translators for women for General conference lives in my ward! Cool huh?

I've had some moments of great trunkiness lately. Moments because it's just a couple of seconds or only a minute of trunkiness, not a permanent attitude of trunkiness. There's a couple reasons for that, the first and funniest is that my area is very close to the city and airport of Guarulhos and so every day I see airplanes landing and taking off haha For some missionaries this would cause a lot of trunkiness but for me, I joke around and pretend but it doesn't actually affect me. I've always gotten to know 5 people here that remind me of people from home like Dad, Rie, James, Uncle Tom, and brother Belchior, my MTC teacher. And of course, Christmas. We had our Christmas conference yesterday and the man that was there to give a talk asked us where was the best place to be during Christmas and I said family haha that wasn't the answer he wanted but it's the obvious answer. And in the elders quorum lesson they and other lessons, they were inviting everyone to have a closer relationship with their family and stuff like that I was just like "familyyyyyyy" inside of me. So that all has caused moments of trunkiness but it's all good, I'm not trunky

I think that only this Christmas am I really understanding the true meaning and purpose of Christmas and the birth of Jesus Christ. I really love that video by the church "He is the Present" it really helped me a lot to understand this. It helped me to understand that Jesus was born and with his birth brought peace and hope. It's something that I've always know and said before but that I really understand now. And I'm very very happy that I can have peace and hope in my life.

There was a super special devotional as well that the theme was about having peace and hope in our lives. There was an elder, Elder Schenk, that passed in this mission about 3 or 4 years ago and he got hit by a bus here. The side mirror of the bus hit him on the left side of his head. The medics got there and took him to the hospital but had little hopes of his survival but continued doing everything they could. His parents were flown to Brasil to be with their son and they talked with the medic and he said that they'd done everything that they could and that there was nothing else to do and that he was going to die. He then asked if they could donate his organs. In the apartment, his dad and mom were alone and the mom said, "Didn't you hear what the doctor said? There's nothing else they can do" and the husband said something that I really liked, he said "I can accept God's will, but I will not stop praying for a miracle" the whole left side of their son's skull was shattered and the brain was damaged. His mom made a small poster with some pictures of his family and what not with a picture of him that he sent with something that he'd sent him also in the weeks before the accident, he'd written home "Your future is as bright as your faith" which is another quote that I really loved.

He didn't die, despite the expectations of the medics. He was in a coma for a month. When he woke from the coma, he didn't know how to speak Portuguese, or English, he didn't know how to walk, and he lost all his vision in one eye and only had a fourth of the vision in the other eye, he didn't know the most basic things and had to relearn everything. Elder Schenk, Britten is his name, and his parents were at the devotional telling this story. Britten told us that he had ADD when he was younger and saw this as a blessing as well because he had to learn to work really hard to get good grades and this helped him have the self-discipline to relearn everything that was needed after the accident. He even relearned Portuguese. Today, he seem like 100 percent normal. If you just looked at him, he would seem like any other young man, he's even dating someone back at home.  I really wish you guys could have been there to hear the story for yourselves, it was really special.

But the message that I understood through all of their story is that in spite of your circumstances, it doesn't matter how difficult your situation is, you can have HOPE and PEACE. I love that message. Hope and Peace. And also that everything we pass in this life, all the difficulties, can be for our benefit and for us to be better people depending on the way we react to this problems and difficulties. I went up to talk with Britten afterwards and thanked him a lot and before leaving I asked him if we could trade ties :) HE ACCEPTED!!! So I got an awesome tie with a signature from an awesome guy and he got an awesome tie from Brasil as well. Like from Brasil in the sense that it has the colors of brasil. The bad news is that it was a traded tie. I got it from Elder Gilliat and when I told him I traded his tie he got a bit upset but not too much haha he understood.

Get on facebook and accept my friend requests please :) The family of Britten should have sent a friend request and also that other missionary that passed in this area 4 years ago. If they tag me in any pictures, save the pictures and send them to me please. And also, post the 2 paragraphs before this one on Facebook. About Christmas and the devotional

Because God so loved the world, that He sent his Only Begotten Son. So that all that believe in him, shall not perish in sadness and anger, but shall have peace and hope and happiness even unto eternal life and forever.

I love my Father, I love my Savior and I'm thankful that we can all change and that we change every day. We are the authors of our own books of life.

Lots of love
Merry Christmas to all!

Elder Horton

12-15-14 Transfers - I'm leaving!



Are you sure dad hasn't retired yet? It sure seems like you guys are traveling a lot, as if he didn't have to work haha

The big news about transfers! I'm leaving!... :/ I didn't think I'd be sad to leave, I thought I'd just be whatever, but when the Zone Leaders called me telling me I was leaving I got kinda sad. Pinda has become a home to me and I've really grown close to the members here. They treat me like their son or their brother and I'm sad to leave them. I never liked good byes. I don't like that moment when you know you're never going to see someone again in a long time. Sometimes I prefer to just disappear without saying goodbye. That's what I did with SES, that internship, everyone knew I was leaving but I didn't want to just stick around saying goodbye so I just left as if it was a normal day. If I did that here though, some people would get angry with me haha. Today I'll be going around and saying goodbye to some people. I've already started to say goodbye to some and Maria do Socorro (that woman that we baptized) started crying and thanked me very much for helping her find this gospel because she was in such a hard moment in her life and we helped her out. Others told me that I did a great work here in Pinda. Others told me that they or their kids would never forget me (how could they, I'm the tallest elder that ever passed there haha) I still don't like goodbyes that much but I like hearing things like that.

My last Sunday in this area and the attendance in the sacrament meeting? 100. The highest since I've been here and a perfect 100. Not 99, or 98. 100. I was happy to see that :)

This last week with Elder Bolognini was a good one, we've really grown to be good friends. Yesterday was his birthday and he we all did something for him and we had a heart to heart moment. He was very grateful and started to get emotional and thanked us for everything we taught him and learned from him and for being his friend and helping him to end his mission happily (even though he still has 2 more transfers). He's a good elder, I'll miss him but I'm happy that I'll have the opportunity to get to know other elders and other people in other areas. We're being separated now, but I've really gained a brother on the mission. He's taught me this as well.

What are some of your favorite Christmas memories??
It's interesting that you ask that because we had our activity and that a word? Like brotherhood or friendship activity. Basically the branch Christmas activity. And they asked us missionaries to share the same thing. I didn't really remember anything all that funny in the moment so I just talked about my family and being close to them.

Did you know that yesterday was 12-13-14??  Interesting, huh?
Actually, for me, it is 13-12-14, the day comes first here

What will the arrangements be for talking to you on Christmas Day??  Will we be skyping?
Yes we'll be skyping but I'm not sure whose computer I'll use and what not because I'm being transferred, But I know that there is a way to do 3 or 4 or 5 way skype with video

As for a Christmas present for me, you know me well mom haha, I think the pens you guys sent also was a part of my Christmas gift, just a bit premature. So if you want you can just throw like 50 dollars on the account for me to use.

What were some of your favorite things from seminary?  Fun activities….  Important things you learned…. etc.
I always liked when there was a game or activity on Fridays with some kind of treat after :)

Love you all!

Elder Horton

12-8-14 Man, it's hard to write in English...I just want to speak and think in Portuguese



How was your week?
We've started to do something called Carta viva de natal or Living Christmas letter. It's actually an idea that Elder Gilliat got from this little green book with over 100 ideas of how to work with members. But it's really simple. We go to a members house and give them a living Christmas letter (or like instead of a letter of paper, we Are the letter/message) and we sing that Christmas song. Joy to the world, and then read Lucas 2 about Christ's birth, and then we share our thoughts about Christmas and Christ's birth for 1 minute and then we end with a kneeling prayer. Then we ask if the member would like anyone to receive that living letter. We did this with one member, Sonia, and she gave 11 referrals! And all of them on her street! That’s awesome right? I'm happy :)

We're going to contact and visit all of these people in the coming days and weeks. We've already done some living letters and everyone's loved it so far. If you guys want, you guys could invite your missionaries to do that with some people you know, maybe neighbors or colleagues. The cool thing is that it's even better than just sending a letter, it's a living letter, and an opportunity for your friends and neighbors to get to know the missionaries. When we went in the house of the friends of Sonia, we asked at the end, we say that we have another message that we love to share about Christ and then ask if we could share that message another day and the person almost always says yes. It's a cool idea, you guys should try it! And the cool thing also is that you guys don't even need to do anything, just give the name and the address and done!

What can you tell me about your new mission president?  What is he like?  Do you interact with him much?  Is his way of doing things similar to your last president or very different?  What have you learned from him?
To me, he doesn't seem all that new haha it's already been like 4 months. He's cool, almost everyone likes him. He's patient, loving, caring. We don't interact with him that much, just every 2 or 3 months. I feel like his way of doing things is different and a bit better than the way Pres. Ferrin was used to doing things, It probably helps that Pres. Andrew has already been a mission president before. I've learned from him how to be a better leader and how to deal with problems.

What have you learned in your studies this week?
This week, I read about Christ's visit here in the Americas after he resurrected and when He organized his church here in the Americas and taught some principles. I also have been reading Leviticus which would be very annoying to read if it wasn't for the manual that's helping me to understand. It's all about offerings and sacrifices and what not. But I'm always impressed with how all of it has to do with Jesus Christ and his atonement and what we have to do be free of our sins.

Did you know that Tanner went to Brazil on his mission, so when you get home you two can talk Portuguese together!! They’ll still be at BYU when you get there next fall.  He’s such a nice guy!
Cool! I'll be excited to use Portuguese when I get back! If you don't use it, you lose it! For this reason I’m also thinking about looking for a nice Brazilian young woman to marry when I get back. We'll see though, it's not a deal breaker but it certainly help me remember brasil, Portuguese, rice and beans and everything good about brasil.

Has anything funny or humorous happened to you recently that made you laugh or chuckle?
We messed up Elder Elias' hair yesterday. And we always call Elder Gilliat out in the member's house for not eating vegetables and what not. He doesn't eat beats or carrot (took 10 seconds for me to remember the word for cenoura, the words you don't use, you lose) and then he gets sick and wonders why! The kid only eats rice and beans and meat!

Elder Bolognini and I share many moments together laughing and smiling. It's really good to finally have a companion who is really my friend.

Man it's hard to write in English...I just want to speak and think in Portuguese.

I don't know if I shared this with you guys but I think I did. In the MTC, one of the speakers was talking about hard areas and what not and I felt a strong feeling that I would in my mission to serve in one of these hard areas and I was excited to be able to work and make a difference in that area. Today, I feel like Pinda is that hard area that I felt, in that moment, that I would work in. And I feel like I've made a difference. And so I'm happy. There are still some problems but I feel like we've managed to make Pinda into a branch that can really grow. For 26 years, this branch has been here and still hasn't become a ward. Why not? There are various reasons but I believe that the branch has changed in the time that I've been here and the people have changed. Not everyone unfortunately but enough.

The church is true

Elder Horton

12-1-14 Passover feast



We had a baptism! I don't remember if I told you last week (I think I did) but Maria do Socorro was baptized! She was super happy and excited. She's the cousin of our relief society president and she was happy too. I'm happy I had the opportunity to help her come to Jesus Christ through His church. And the best part is that she has so much support already in the church. As long as she stays here in Pinda for a bit, she'll never go inactive :) Elder Bolognini forgot his camera for now so I'll have to send the pictures later.

Hey dad, you remember that one time that we imitated a Passover feast with the seminary in Greenville and you cooked up lamb? I've been reading in the Old Testament and I read about the Passover feast and you're actually supposed to leave the lamb whole without even breaking a bone to represent Jesus Christ who didn't break a bone. Interesting huh? I'm surprised how much symbolism I'm finding in the Old Testament and how many references I'm finding to Jesus Christ

Mom, dad, did you guys ever read All of the Old Testament? I imagine the answer is yes but I'm just curious.

Also dad, I wanted to thank you for being a good example to me with respect to home teaching. Thanks for always giving the example and marking the appointments and taking me with you. In that time, I didn't understand the importance of what we were doing or how important are visits were but today I know how important it was. Thanks dad for your help and example. You're a good dad.

Have you guys seen the thing that the church is doing with Christmas? It's awesome! They're doing it in Brasil too. But I don't know if my branch received materials to do it... :/ but I hope you guys have the opportunity to share this video and invite to your friends and coworkers! Put the link on my Facebook please.

I would like to invite you guys (everyone who reads this letter) to put on a music from the church and get a piece of paper and a pencil. While the music is playing, write down the names of everyone who comes to your mind. Then ask in prayer that Heavenly Father shows you which of those people you guys should talk with about the gospel. And then tell the missionaries and mark a night for you and this person and the missionaries to go to your home and share the gospel, I think it's a good idea. We did that with some of the members and together, we received 15 referrals this last week. Cool huh?

This last week, we were at a brother's house and we found out that he sells like beauty products, cosmetic stuff (which is kind of funny in itself because he's like 70) but he said he's already sold like 2000 reais of stuff in a couple months which isn't half bad. He showed us a cream that removes hairs! Like you put it on your leg or arm and leave it for like 10 minutes and then when you take off the cream, you don't have any more hair on that part of your skin! He said it lasts like 3 or 4 months. I put a bit on my arm to try it out and it worked! But only like a square inch of my arm, it’s not that noticeable. But I was amazed, I didn't know that this kind of thing existed! Maybe I'll gift my future wife with this cream :)

Black Friday! I think it was the first time I bought something on black Friday. I bought 3 jars of Nutella and Ferrero rocher all with about a 40 percent discount. Brasil started doing Black Friday just last year so it's a new thing for them.

I gave a talk in church yesterday. Brother Domingos (which in English is Sundays) called me Saturday night to give the talk. The good news is that, as almost any other missionary, I didn't need a lot of time to prepare a good talk. I feel like my talk touched the needs of the branch and helped everyone also to focus a bit more on missionary work. I was going to talk more about missionary work but the president's counselor was already tapping my foot like "It's time to stop now!!" I only talked for 17 minutes :/ I wanted to talk for like 30. I only used like half of the material that I prepared. I started off stating that I would talk about spiritual growth. Then I talked about our potential as human beings to become, one day, as God, using many scriptures to prove that doctrine and I could tell by the looks on the people's faces that they understood, even the investigators. Then I talked about the attributes of Christ from Preach My Gospel and how we develop attributes of Christ. Then I told about the situation of Jesus Christ and His apostles at the last supper when he said that one of them would betray Him and their reaction when they said "Lord, Is it I?” I told it the same way that President Uchtdorf told the story in the last general conference in the priesthood session. Then I closed with some quotes from Preach My Gospel about missionary work that had to do with spiritual growth. I thought it was well done and I was happy when I sat down :) Some people thanked me for my talk after which is always nice.

I was talking with one of the members of the branch yesterday and he said to me "There are some transfers that the branch feels (like feels a difference or that something’s missing or like it hurts)" then he said to me "When you're transferred, it'll probably be one of those times" It's always good to hear that you're making a difference. I'm happy that I've had the opportunity to work in this branch, I've really grown to care about everyone here.

This is a longer letter, I'm sure that'll make mom happy

I love you all! The church is true! There's no way it's all just a lie created by a 14 year old boy. That is physically impossible, I've thought about it many times and many people have tried to convince me that it was a lie but I know that it is not a lie.

Elder Horton

11-24-14 Loving the Old Testament


Hey mom

Yay! I'm happy to hear the news of Rie's new baby! Cute pictures!

I've been thinking about something. Mom you bought 2 RM Planners right? Lately I've been thinking a lot about my friends and people that I knew in Georgia and South Carolina and how I never really talked about the church with them or did much of anything. I've also been thinking about people that I knew that have become less actives. My original plan was return home and then go straight to college again but I feel like I want to go back to Georgia and South Carolina and help All of my friends to at least hear about my religion and have the opportunity to learn more. And so I could use the 2 planners, 6 weeks each, and visit the 2 states and all my friends. Rowers, school friends, church friends, old crushes, everyone. What do you guys think of this idea?

Elder Bolognini and I are continuing to do well and we have a lot of friendship so I'm able to encourage him to be more obedient in some things and work harder and visit more people. He really does have a gift to be able to talk with people and teach so I'm trying to take advantage of that and learn from him that ability

I'm reading the Old Testament and I'm really liking it. It's really interesting. It's hard to read sometimes in Portuguese but I have my English bible and a manual that explains background and meanings and what not which is very handy. I never knew that the Old Testament had so much symbolism and so many references to Christ.

How was your week?
My week was good! We're getting some more references from members to work with and one of our references is ready to be baptized this Sunday! She even asked "Can you baptize me next week?" To Elder Bolognini. She was watching the baptismal meeting of 2 other investigators of Elder Gilliat and Elias that were baptized (congratz to them!) 1 of the interviews, I even did at church because there wasn't time on Saturday. The president Andrew called us saying that we could baptize him. We needed his authority because he doesn't have 16 years, he only has 13. But he was super excited and he pulled his whole family to church at least yesterday and I believe he'll be the key to the conversion of his family and to changing the environment in the branch a bit. He's super excited and talkative which is exactly what the branch needs. But yeah so they baptized and I have 90% certainty that this weekend we'll baptize too. It's really awesome to work with the members.

How is it with your larger district? Do you have to travel more to be involved in their work and progress?
It's cool. Like I already said, I feel more like a district leader. It requires a bit more effort on my part to follow up with them. I also have to do more divisions/splits with the other area which is a bit hard just because of the distance. It's 15 reais just to go there and back.

Does your mission have any special plans for Christmas time?
Every Christmas, there's a Christmas conference so at this time the whole mission will be together for a conference

Do you still have the nativity set that E Steele gave you? Will you pass it along to another companion at some point?
Yeah I do, I need to give that to my son...thanks for reminding me. That's the tradition, that you pass it on to your children :)

Well that's about it for this week.

Elder Horton